Industrial Explosions In The Gulf Coast Area Continue

In less than seven days, the state of Louisiana experienced three different chemical plant explosions with the last one occurring on Tuesday June 18 in Washington Parish where there was a fire and explosion. On Thursday June 13, two employees died and 77 other people were injured in a fire and explosion that occurred at the Olefins Williams plant in Geismar. The next night in Donaldsonville, one employee lost his life in an explosion at CF Industries, and four employees and three contractors were injured. After the second plant explosion of the week in Donaldsonville, officials with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) decided that it would be necessary for their agency to take part in the investigation. The day of the explosion, the hazardous materials unit arrived at CF Industries and spent the night investigating the petrochemical plant explosion. Twin Explosions in Ascension Parish CF Industries did not have dangerous chemicals on the grounds at the time of the chemical plant accident although it does fabricate ammonia and nitrogen fertilizers. A fire did not break out, and officials deemed the surrounding area to be safe because chemicals were not released into the air. The explosion occurred in a location where workers were performing routine maintenance. In contrast, the explosion at the Geismar plant did involve dangerous chemicals. In the case of last week’s blast, the highly flammable chemical propylene caught fire and resulted in the explosion. What Caused the Explosion at CF Industries? The cause of the CF Industries explosion has not been determined definitively, but one theory is that a small vessel ruptured as workers were off-loading nitrogen from a tank truck. Another guess is that over-pressurization was the cause of the blast. Further investigation will shed light on this question in the future. Just last year, CF Industries was sanctioned by OSHA for several health and safety violations. Of 14 infractions, OSHA determined 12 to be egregious, and the agency levied a fine of $150,000 that CF Industries declined to challenge. The South’s Unique Problem The south is unique because of the many industrial plants that exist within such close proximity to each other. However, New Orleans and the Mississippi River have one of the greatest concentrations of these types of plants. Between the Mississippi River and Baton Rouge, there are 311 chemical plants. This location also has several oil refineries and factories that manufacture plastics. Residents are grateful that these plants exist because of the jobs and prosperity that they bring to the area, but this raises concerns of the possibility of petrochemical accidents. The first to be affected will, of course, be the employees of these plants, but those living in the surrounding communities also exist under a certain level of risk. Because of the twin explosions between New Orleans and Baton Rouge, people are aware of the dangers along the Mississippi River, but similar conditions exist in the Gulf Coast, and people are anticipating more chemical plant disasters in the future. Receiving Compensation for Injuries in Chemical Plant Accidents If you have been injured in a chemical plant accident, you will need an industrial explosion lawyer to help you fight to be compensated for your injuries. You may be entitled to payment for your medical bills, pain and suffering, but you will need a refinery explosion attorney who knows exactly how to fight for you. After several years of taking these matters to court on behalf of their clients, experienced industrial accident attorneys know exactly what to expect from the other side. Your attorney will have your interests at the forefront, and they are exactly what you will need.